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Alabama 487 articles

Janssen knew Risperdal could cause boys to grow breasts

risperdal

Johnson & Johnson unit Janssen Pharmaceuticals knew for years that its antipsychotic drug Risperdal could cause the abnormal growth of breasts in boys and young men, yet the company failed to warn the mother of an Alabama boy or his doctors of these “distressing results,” the mother’s attorney told a Philadelphia jury. “We’re going to show you that Janssen knew all the time that he took the drug that the drug caused an increase in prolactin levels, and that it was associated with children and adolescents having this distressing result,” the attorney said. Austin Pledger, now 20, was prescribed Risperdal ... Read More

Texas becomes latest state to ban Trinity ET-Plus guardrails

guard-rail - KCPQ-TV image

Texas has become the latest state to ban the use of ET-Plus guardrail systems made by Dallas-based Trinity Industries from its highways over safety concerns, bringing the number of states to blacklist the guardrails to more than 30. The ET-Plus guardrails, made by the Trinity Highway Products division of Trinity Industries, came under fire nationwide after a whistleblower sued the company on behalf of the federal government and won. In his lawsuit, whistleblower Joshua Harman alleged that Trinity modified the design of the ET-Plus guardrails in 2005 to save money, but failed to notify the Federal Highway Administration about the ... Read More

State Farm appeals verdict in whistleblower lawsuit involving Hurricane Katrina damages

whistleblower

NEW ORLEANS, La. – The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals will hear oral arguments Feb. 5 as Illinois-based State Farm Fire and Casualty Co. appeals a verdict that it pay $3 million in damages and legal fees stemming from a whistleblower lawsuit. A Mississippi jury sided with sisters Cori and Kerri Rigsby of Ocean Springs, Miss., in 2013, who filed a lawsuit under the whistleblower provisions of the False Claims Act, which authorizes private citizens to sue on behalf of the federal government. The sisters accused State Farm of manipulating damage reports after Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf Coast in ... Read More

Listeria illnesses, deaths linked to Happy Apples Company prepackaged caramel apples

Happy Apples caramel apples

Happy Apples Company of Washington, Mo., is recalling its prepackaged caramel apples after the products were found to be the source of a listeria monocytogenes outbreak that sickened 29 and killed five in 10 states. All 29 people who were sickened were hospitalized, and nine of the illnesses occurred in pregnant women. The recall comes about a week after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a warning to consumers not to eat prepackaged caramel apples as it investigated which commercially made brands were responsible for the outbreak. Though the apples are most popular around Halloween, the CDC ... Read More

FDA considers legal action against people selling pure powdered caffeine

caffeine powder - photo by WILX news

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is looking into building a case against people who sell pure powdered caffeine to stop online sales of the potent substance that has been blamed for several illnesses and at least two deaths. The news comes just months after the FDA issued a safety alert to consumers about pure caffeine powder after the agency learned of the death of Logan James Stiner, a high school athlete who died after consuming a lethal dose of the substance last July. Pure powdered caffeine, which is sold in bulk as a dietary supplement, is essentially 100 percent caffeine. ... Read More

Auburn University study finds the BP oil spill may plague state for years to come

tar ball - WSFA

Oil and tar from BP’s Deepwater Horizon oil spill is still trapped in the sand along Alabama’s Gulf beaches four and a half years later, a new study by Auburn University researchers has found. The study may not come as a surprise to the residents of coastal Alabama who frequent the beaches, but it does demonstrate that the oil from the BP disaster is not as quick to degrade as some scientists expected. It’s also another sign that Gulf Coast hasn’t returned to normal the way BP’s television ads have suggested. Many beachgoers might be surprised to find much of ... Read More

Defective Takata air bag inflators lead to second recall expansion by Chrysler amid safety worries

Takata airbag - image source alexauto321, wikicommons

There is more drama stirring in the defective Takata air bag inflators situation as Chrysler announces its second recall expansion, this time of 208,783 vehicles, in one week. The expansion comes likely as a reaction from regulators like the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), which are following the issue closely. Since June, Chrysler has recalled more than 600,000 vehicles featuring the infamous Takata air bags due to reports that the defective Takata air bag inflators may explode, firing tiny metal fragments into drivers and passengers within the vehicle. Honda vehicles in areas of high humidity, such as Florida, have experienced ... Read More

Trinity guardrails to be independently tested after federal jury sides with whistleblower

guard-rail - KCPQ-TV image

Federal highway regulators said they will re-test a certain guardrail system model manufactured by Trinity Highway Products LLC after the company lost a whistleblower lawsuit last month and was ordered to pay the U.S. $175 million. The new crash tests of Trinity’s ET-Plus guardrails will be conducted at an independent lab in San Antonio, Texas, in mid-January. The results are expected by the end of February. The results of the tests will determine whether the government will reimburse states that continue to use the Trinity guardrails, although the manufacturer suspended sales of the ET-Plus shortly after the verdict against it in ... Read More

Dietary supplement for infants, children recalled due to fungal contamination

Recall - ABC Dophilus Powder Fungus

Solgar, Inc. ABC Dophilus Powder, a dietary supplement for infants and children, is being recalled after testing revealed the products were contaminated with a fungus that can cause potentially dangerous infections. ABC Dophilus Powder is a supplement containing acidophilus, a bacteria that supports the healthy functioning of the intestinal system by promoting a favorable environment for the absorption of nutrients. Testing conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and prevention (CDC) revealed the presence of Rhizopus oryzae in 1.75 ounce (50 g) containers of Solgar ABC Dophilus Powder, which may cause Mucormycosis, a rare infection. Those at greater risk of developing ... Read More

Honda expands exploding airbag recall again after deadly Malaysia accident

Takata airbag - image source alexauto321, wikicommons

Honda Motor Corp. has widened its recall of vehicles fitted with faulty airbags made by Japanese supplier Takata Corp. by another 170,000 units. The announcement came after the company said that a driver died in Malaysia after being blasted with shrapnel from one of the defective airbags. The fatality in Malaysia was the fifth known record of a driver or passenger being killed by an exploding airbag in a Honda vehicle and the first such death to occur outside of the United States. The Takata airbags at the center of the Honda recall and recalls by 11 different other car ... Read More